Jay Z's Tidal streaming service sells $200m stake to Sprint

Jay Z's Tidal streaming service sells $200m stake to Sprint

Tidal, the high-end music streaming service owned by Jay Z, has sold a third of its business to US telecoms company Sprint.

The deal values the company at about $600m, the Financial Times reports.

Tidal has struggled to attract subscribers in an intensely competitive market that is led by Spotify and Apple Music, but includes a large number of other challengers.

The brand’s unique selling point is that it offers tracks at a higher bitrate, providing a higher quality listening experience – but at a price of £19.99 per month in the UK, which is twice as much as most of its competitors.

Jay Z, husband of Beyoncé, bought Tidal in January 2015 and relaunched the service as a platform that aimed to give artists more control in the music industry. Market leader Spotify has faced accusations that it does not pay artists enough for the use of its tracks, leading some – notably, Taylor Swift – to boycott the platform.

Sprint in the fourth largest US telecoms company. It’s chief executive, Marcelo Claure, will join Tidal’s board, but Jay Z and the rest of its artist management team will continue to run it. The deal will allow Sprint to provide exclusive offers to its customers.

Jay Z said: "Sprint shares our view of revolutionising the creative industry to allow artists to connect directly with their fans and reach their fullest, shared potential. Marcelo understood our goal right away and together we are excited to bring Sprint’s 45 million customers an unmatched entertainment experience."

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